B&D League: week 3

3 weeks in and its all to play for with Silver King holders Fisherwick floundering in 6th position. Mind you it will be difficult to predict a final result with one club not playing each week and a bunch of teams at the bottom arguing over the wooden spoon.
B&D League: week 3

League Chess Action

It seems every year brings a raft of personnel and club changes; amazing really considering the number of players involved. This year was no exception:

  • two new clubs enter the fray: NICS playing out of Maynard Sinclair Pavilion while Lindores home venue is Lindores Cafe near Holywood Arches
  • two clubs change their venue: Belfast South move to the Bankers Club, Mallusk move to Muldoons Bar
  • and sadly we bid farewell to Bombardier who withdrew at the last moment

After several years of sterling service, Kevin Agnew is bowing out with Robert Lavery stepping up to replace him as the "goto guy" for league results. Thanks Kevin for all your efforts; Good luck Robert - Kevin will be a tough act to follow.

Remember, all results should be sent to results at ulsterchess.org (there is a link at the bottom of the page). Late or missing reports will be penalised with point deductions.

Week 3 Performance

With Muldoon's, Fisherwick and now Lindores off to a delayed start because of early free weeks, top of the leader board shows Lagan and Belfast South leading the pack ahead of last years Silver King runner-up Ballynafeigh 1. At first sight Ballynafeigh 2 looked like they might be a surprise package led by Ulster Champion Mike Redman but when Fishwerick wheeled out Michael Waters on board 1, the defending champions came out on top.

So far results have been somewhat unusual; a few heavy defeats for weaker teams let opponents gain big wins. But apart from these games, margins are small for winning teams. This all makes it very difficult to see any real pattern to identify likely league winners. Despite all this complexity, these first few games in the open section could well make or break a team if they cannot establish a sound points platform to start their Division 1 challenge in the second part of the league.

A few teams are rapidly getting pushed to the bottom of the pile as they are being punished by teams with strong lower boards. There is no clear pattern quite yet as to how these teams will sort themselves out. Quite possibly teams with unbalanced home & away squads will have an undesirable impact in this first stage of the competition.

An interesting season ahead; watch this space!

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